Soundout – 5 Questions with John Cooper-Lara

Posted on 29 May 2008 at 6:32pm
By Ben Briscoe


John Cooper-Lara is the president of the Greg Dollgener Memorial AIDS Fund. GDMAF will host the third annual Metro Ball Saturday, June 7. The event will be at Station 4 and tickets are $20 online at GDMAF.org and $25 at the door.




This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition May 30, 2008.



1 What is Metro Ball?
Metro Ball is the primary fundraising event for GDMAF. It is a dance party with entertainment, and we’ll have aerial artist Neal Everett and DJ Frankie Ice. The event actually runs from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., but it’s intended to run through the night.

2 What is GDAMF?
GDAMF is a group of friends who got together in the 90s to help those living with AIDS. Greg was a volunteer who was all over town helping out while dealing with his own illness. We raise money from private individuals to provide emergency aid. A lot of times, we give out money for things that Ryan White and other government funds restrict. For an example, we had one 14-year-old whose co-pays we covered for a whole year. That way she was able to get her medication and stay healthy.

3 How did you get involved with GDMAF?
The founder, Greg’s partner, and I worked for the same company. Greg passed away in June 2004, then my partner passed away soon after that in January 2005. We both buried our loved ones together, and I knew this was an organization I wanted to be involved in.

4 How do you want the world to remember Greg?
 He was just this average guy who showed a lot of people what it meant to take care of one another. He did it without reward. He didn’t need a pat on the back. He just did it because it was the right thing to do.

5 What would you say to someone on the fence about going to Metro Ball?
You’re going to have a great time and do something really important. You can’t beat it. There will be silent auctions, raffles, dancing to great music and amazing entertainment. At the same time, you’re helping change someone’s life.


Soundout is a weekly column featuring people whose jobs and interests have an impact on the daily lives of members of the LGBT community. It features those who often go unnoticed by the press and community. If you’d like to recommend someone to cover in this column, editor@dallasvoice.com.

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